While the US is still on the hook to start easing sanctions against Iran in the coming days as part of the P5+1 nuclear deal, they are moving with considerable more alacrity in their efforts to impose new sanctions against Iran over their development on ballistic missiles.
Reports are that 12 companies and individuals are set to be sanctioned by the Treasury Department in the next round of sanctions, which US officials say are independent of the nuclear sanctions. Despite this, the whole pretense of sanctions being about a violation of UN Security Council resolutions centers on the missiles being capable of holding nuclear warheads.
The Iranian government insists the missiles in question aren’t capable of carrying nuclear warheads, which they don’t have at any rate because as the IAEA continues to affirm, they are complying with the P5+1 nuclear deal. They are therefore viewing the sanctions as a US violation of the deal.
Russia and China appear to concur, and are said to have opposed any sanctions on Iran related to the development of conventional missiles. With the rest of the world scrambling to reopen business with Iran after the nuclear deal, the US may be falling further out of step with the rest of the world with such unilateral moves.